The last dictatorship in Europe came to end this month as Belarus goes to the polls to elect a president on March 19. Over the past few days, I was thinking what is missing that does not let the Middle Easterners or Egyptians make the same choices as Eastern Europe peoples. The world is helping Eastern Europe to stand on its foot. It is in the best interest of Western Europe to push democracy and freedom in the second half of Europe. Rich strong neighbors are helping emerging democracies. Who are our democratic neighbors in the Middle East? Israel. Arabs hate Israel for several reaoms but mainly on religious basis. Southern Europe is doing its best to curb illegal migrants coming from Africa. The Middle East States are not part of any democratic world. East Europe, at the end of the day, is part of Europe. The winds of democracy and freedom must be blowing towards East Europe at some point. Also, the US stepped in to support the new emerging democracies through many ways after the fall of the Berlin wall
in 1989. As the USSR decided to abandon the Brezhnev doctrine
that allowed USSR to use force against anti-socialist forces, the Russian President, Mikhaïl Gorbachev, at that time made up his mind to resign to the democratic transformation that saved his country through an innovative policy based on restructuring (known as Perestroïka). Since that day in history, the doors of Eastern Europe were opened wide for democracy and mainly reconciliation. Despite the harshness of life in those communist satellite countries, their rulers did not ruin their taste or appreciate for life as Middle Eastern rulers did; hence the challenge is bigger in the ME.
In the Middle East, a bunch of presidents came to power following military coup d’etats in countries with oil and other resources that could sustain their lavishing lives while guaranteeing sustainable poverty for their peoples. They silently took the decision not to relinquish their offices until they are dead or have a son to take over as the case in Syria the potential scenario in Egypt. The problem is that those presidents did not only decide to take countries forever, but also corrupt the peoples’ lives with Pan-Arabism and extremist Islamism. The Pan-Arabism is the baby of Syria. Extremist Islamism is the baby of Wahabism of the oil-rich country, Saudi Arabia. Of course there are other factors that helped dictators to take control. The result is that for half a century, Middle Easterners’ lives are deteriorating from worse to worse.
Apparently, Europe’s socialist ideology was beaten by another ideology. The people were freed without blowing themselves and they sought the right supporters as in the case of Georgia. Georgians won the US as one of their biggest supporters. The US is committed to supporting it.
Over the past couple of years, conditions have been improving in favor of bringing democracy to the Middle East. There have been many positive changes but still there is no one single leader who wants to step down to give his people the right to rule. And this will never happen.
So what is the ideological or psychological knot that keeps the Middle Eastern people at the camp of freedom losers? That will be the eternal question in my mind.
The US stepped in to liberate Iraq that was ruled by military dictatorship for 35 years. Iraq was liberated from the military rule by a big military operation in March 2003. I had never imagined Saddam Hussein out of office waking up one day to play the kind guy and leave his people to live in peace under the umbrella of freedom and democracy. If the rulers in the Middle East do not want to strike true allies with forces of democracy in the world, what is hindering the people? Why do most Egyptians stand unconsciously in support of dictatorship?
Most of seculars in Egypt are socialists or communists, hence enemies of the capitalist
free world of Europe and the United States.
Majority of Egyptians are pro-Arab nationalism. This ideology that kept all Arabs, including Egyptians, slaves to their dictator rulers. To be a successful dictator, you need to create an external enemy. The enemy was created through this ideology, hence the sustainability of the no-individualism and continuous hatred against invented enemies, mainly the US and Israel. The happy relationship image between the US and the regime in Egypt spread frustration feelings among Egyptians that the US is supporting their torturer and helped the US to lose credibility among Egyptians. That gave opportunity to regime to strengthen political Islam, hence creating an enemy to the US. The over-blown stories of victory in media over Israel strengthened the idea of Israel the enemy and not the peace agreement. After the death of President Sadat, the only culture that was instilled was that Israel is the enemy. It was important to isolate Egyptians from Israel to kill peace and maintain an everlasting enemy that serves dictatorship. Also, because the true battles that should be won at the domestic level, like alleviating people’s poverty is not a priority, however, making people believe that the regime is watching Israel, the enemy, is the worthwhile battle.
Our neighbor Saudi Arabia was given the keys to our lands to establish mosques that worth millions everywhere while true poverty stand few meters from the luxurious mosques. Poverty is on the rise, and fatalism struck the balance. Theology is closely related to the development of all other corners in life in general. A third enemy was created here but from within the Egyptians. Egyptian Copts became another enemy to Egyptian Muslims. The reason why they became enemies is because citizens are not treated on the basis of their citizenship rights but on their religions. That also is another justification why we should hate Israel and the US, the Jewish and the Christian enemies. The Copts became the American agents because they are Christians like the US.
Those whom the US considers pro-US educated Egyptians as some of them had their degrees in the US universities are double-agents. They are using the US and working with the regime against the causes of freedom and democracy and against the Egyptian people.
Non-partisan opposition groups in Egypt are writing in their mission statements as preamble; “the Zionist enemy, the US occupation …etc”. They are recycling and singing the broken records of the fascist regimes in the Middle East. They make no difference to impress anyone and that’s why their base will always remain weak domestically and internationally. They do not promise a dream, they promise victories based on more hatred and revenge. Islamists in Egypt are successful because they are singing their own song.
Read my post I think they are going to like you
to know why emerging opposition will remain weak with no popular base. I recently met a Palestinian friend of mine and we were talking politics as usual and guess what she told me, "I wish Egypt get us (Palestinians) out of their mind. Why do not they let us alone. They include us in everything, I wish they stop and solve their own problems". And that's in her own words.